Mr. Speaker, there is no doubt that we, as a nation, have done our best in terms of the way we have received and managed refugees who have come into this country. But let us not forget that we have not achieved perfection in this regard and therefore on this day we should use the opportunity to review our performance in this area and find out whether we have taken enough steps to ensure that we strengthen the institutions that are responsible for receiving and managing the affairs of refugees.
Mr. Speaker, inasmuch as we have become a receptacle for refugees, let us not also forget that bad governance is one of the causes and we, as a nation, have done well in terms of our governance performance. In this regard I would urge that as a nation we should consider not just receiving the problems of countries that are experiencing bad governance but also constitute ourselves into exporters of good governance to those countries so that the problem does not occur there in the first place and then we would have to deal with the problem afterwards.
It is in this regard that I would urge that those who are manning our diplomacy must be very firm on one issue. They must not waver on the importance of our position when it comes to the issue of democracy, as the one clear means of ensuring that there would be good governance in those countries and that ultimately they would not be exporting problems to our country.
Mr. Speaker, on that note I would
associate myself with the Statement that has been made on this very important day.
Deputy Minister for the Interior (Capt. Nkrabeah Effah-Dartey (rtd.)): Mr. Speaker, thank you for the opportunity to contribute to the Statement. Mr. Speaker, the Ministry of the Interior has oversight responsibility for the Ghana Refugee Board and we take note of all the points that have been made in connection with the World Refugee Day.
Mr. Speaker, we of the Ministry of the Interior will do the best that we can to make the life of refugees better and tolerable. Mr. Speaker, I had the unfortunate experience of following my boss, the Minister for the Interior to a refugee camp called Christian Village in the Western Region. Mr. Speaker, I am advised that this refugee centre is in the constituency of Mr. Speaker.
Mr. Speaker, in fact, when I got there, the scene that I saw, my prayer was that there should not be any refugee throughout the world. Because, I saw people and they were complaining that they lived on one cup of rice a month; and the way they were talking I was just looking at them; it is very incomprehensible. In fact, I just could not understand.
But Mr. Speaker, as my hon. Colleagues have said, we who are in positions of authority, not only in Ghana but all over the African continent, should always do all that we can so as to prevent a situation where our nationals would want to flee from the land. Because, if you live in a place as a refugee, you literally cannot do anything; you just endure life and that is really terrible.
So Mr. Speaker, the Ministry of the Interior is grateful to those who made
contributions on the Statement. We will note all their points and suggestions; and we thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.